Presentation on theme: "Traditional Chinese Instruments"— Presentation transcript:
1 Traditional Chinese Instruments CHINA MusicTraditional Chinese Instruments
2 Chinese MusicChinese music has a distinctive sound, quite unlike any Western music. This is mainly due to the unique sounds and playing styles of traditional Chinese musical instruments (CPP 2008).Watch the following clip of people making music with traditional Chinese instruments.
3 InstrumentsInstruments are often categorised by the materials they are made of. Chinese instruments can be made of skin, gourd, bamboo, wood, silk, earth/clay, metal or stone.Eg. The strings on this instrument aremade of silk.
4 Types of Instruments Blown Plucked Bowed, or Struck. The Chinese also categorised their instruments based on how they were played. For example, their instruments are either;BlownPluckedBowed, orStruck.
5 Woodwind, strings and percussion. Blown instruments are like our woodwind instruments, where sound is created by blowing air into the instrument.Plucked and bowed instruments are like our string instruments, where either the fingers or a bow are used on the strings to create music.Struck instruments are like our percussion instruments, where sound is created when instruments are hit with another object, or are sometimes hit together.Ask students for examples of wind instruments, eg. saxophone, trumpet, flute.Ask students for examples of string instruments, eg. violin, guitarAsk students for examples of percussion instruments, eg. drums, cymbals
6 Sorting Activity Blown Plucked Bowed, or Struck. You will now see images of 16 different traditional Chinese instruments. Your job is to sort them into the four categories that the Chinese use to describe how they are played.BlownPluckedBowed, orStruck.You may wish to provide students with a template (similar to slide 25) for recording their answers.
7 1. Bangu To hear a sample of bangu music, click here; Bangu; Ban: (flat board); gu: (drum)Struck instrumentMade from wood, covered with skin (hide)To hear a sample of bangu music, click here;
8 2. Banhu To hear a sample of banhu music, click here; Banhu; Ban: (flat board); hu: (Barbarian fiddle)Bowed string instruments.Strings made of silk and drum made from wood.To hear a sample of banhu music, click here;
9 3. Bo To hear a sample of bo music, click here; Struck instrument (struck together)Made from metal (high tin bronze)To hear a sample of bo music, click here;
10 4. Dizi To hear a sample of dizi music, click here; The traditional Chinese flute.Blown instrumentMade from bamboo.To hear a sample of dizi music, click here;
11 5. Erhu To hear a sample of erhu music, click here; Erhu; Er means twoBowed string instrument.Strings traditionally made from silk (sometimes metal is used).Sounds quite like a violin.Still the most popular bowed instrument in today’s Chinese music.To hear a sample of erhu music, click here;
12 6. Luo To hear a sample of luo music, click here; (Gong) Struck instrument.Made from metal.Used in Chinese opera (as is common with percussion instruments).To hear a sample of luo music, click here;
13 7. GuanBlown (wind) instrument.Made from either bamboo or wood.
15 9. Muyu Muyu; Mu: (wooden); yu: (fish) Struck instrument Made from wood.Used in Buddhist temples to accompany Buddhist chants.
16 10. Pipa To hear a sample of pipa music, click here; Plucked string instrument.The belly is made of wood, and it has 4 silk strings.To hear a sample of pipa music, click here;
17 11. Yangqin To hear a sample of yangqin music, click here; Plucked string instrumentTo hear a sample of yangqin music, click here;
18 12. Souna To hear a sample of souna music, click here; Wind instrument.Made from bamboo.To hear a sample of souna music, click here;
19 13. Ruan Plucked string instrument. Sometimes called a “moon guitar”. Wooden soundboard (belly) with 4 strings, played with a plactrum (like a guitar).
20 14. Zhonghu Bowed string instrument. Zhonghu (two-stringed viola) is like an Erhu.It has a wooden drum that is covered with snakeskin on one end.
21 15. Sheng To hear a sample of sheng music, click here; Blown (wind) instrument.Base originally made from gourd with bamboo pipes.Called a “Chinese mouth organ”.One of the oldest varieties of Chinese instruments (dating back about 3000 years ago).To hear a sample of sheng music, click here;
22 16. Zheng Plucked string instrument. Played with both hands, using imitation fingernails.Stings were traditionally made from silk, but metal is more commonly used today.
23 How did you go? Blown Bowed Plucked Struck 4. Dizi 2. Banhu 10. Pipa 1. Bangu7. Guan5. Erhu11. Yangqin3. Bo12. Souna8. Jinghu13. Ruan6. Luo15. Sheng14. Zhonghu16. Zheng9. Muyu
24 Categories by Material Can you list an instrument that is made from;MaterialInstrumentSilkMetalWoodBambooSkinGourdEarth/ClayOcarinaStonePien ChingAs we didn’t see examples of clay or stone, read description from below.Clay - The ocarina, a small, egg-shaped wind instrument (with six holes for the finger tips) made of clay.Stone - A good example is the Pien Ching. It is a set of L-shaped stones, of different quantities and sizes, hanging from a stand and struck with a special hammer. They are played only at court and during religious ceremonies.(Information taken from
25 How did you go? Material Instrument Silk Stringed instruments eg. erhu MetalBo (cymbals), GongWoodMuyu (also xylophones)BambooMost wind instruments, eg. dizi, sounaSkinDrums eg. banguGourdShengEarth/ClayOcarinaStonePien ChingNote that other instruments are partly constructed of wood (eg. the body of the pipa, the drum of the banhu), but that the main group of wood instruments consisted of wooded blocks which were struck, or xylophones with wooden keys.
26 References Information and audio files taken from: China People Promotions (CPP) 2008, Promoting traditional Chinese arts and culture, retrieved 13 May 2009,Flogoe1, 2006, Chinese music: flute, banjo, citer and erhu, retrieved 12 May 2009,Information and images taken from:Noll, P 2009, Traditional Chinese instruments, retrieved 13 May 2009,